WILMINGTON — Possible safety improvements at several dangerous intersections were discussed at a meeting of Wilmington council’s streets committee.
After hearing citizens’ concerns and a recent rollover accident that began with someone going the wrong way on Main Street, the streets committee of Wilmington council asked Maintenance and Repair (streets) Superintendent Jerry Runk to put up signs on Mulberry Street and South Street clarifying that Main Street is a one-way road.
Those signs will remind drivers not to turn the wrong way onto Main Street.
“Both them intersections have been an issue lately, so we’re going to try to address them both at the same time,” Runk told the News Journal.
The committee Thursday also chose not to place a stop sign at the intersection of Lorish Avenue and Walnut Street, taking the item off of Councils agenda Thursday. Instead, the committee asked Runk to place a crosswalk there to improve pedestrian traffic near Denver Place Elementary School.
President of Council Randy Riley, citing a U.S. Department of Transportation publication, said placing stop signs where one isn’t needed can increase the likelihood of collisions.
Streets committee chair Joe Spicer said he would like to see how the crosswalk works, adding that a stop sign can always be added later if the crosswalk doesn’t seem to help.
Runk informed the committee that visibility was improved at the intersection of Jenny Lane and Prairie Avenue. Committee chair Joe Spicer asked if Runk could also stripe Prairie Avenue to indicate that the road narrows. Runk said he would also see if he had a sign indicating that the road narrows.
Spicer and committee member Jonathan McKay approved placing before council a request from Wilmington Police Chief Duane Weyand to remove a parking space on Howard Street to allow fire trucks and ambulances better visibility and maneuverability when turning from Vine Street to Howard Street. Council will take up the request at its next meeting Aug.4.
Committee member Mark McKay was absent from the Thursday meeting.
Wilmington Safety and Service Director Brian Shidaker told council he will research what a traffic study at the intersection of Wayne Road and Nelson Avenue. Meanwhile, Runk will look into striping solutions aimed at reducing accidents and near-accidents at the intersection.
Commonly, council member Matt Purkey said, drivers on Nelson Avenue will attempt to use the wide lane to go around a vehicle waiting to turn left and then head straight through to the other side of Nelson.
Weyand said there are a few serious accidents there a year and many near misses, too.
“I know it’s a dangerous intersection,” Matt Purkey said.
Runk said he intends to use striping to discourage the use of the wide turning area as a second lane.
Spicer asked that it be kept on the committee’s agenda while more research is done. He wants to see council’s budgetary outlook before committing funds to a study.
On old business, Runk said he was waiting to hear back from the Ohio Department of Transportation about placing signs on North Lincoln Street, part of which is also State Route 134. Those signs would direct trucks headed to TimberTech through downtown Wilmington with the aim of reducing traffic on residential streets in the area.
Reach Nathan Kraatz at 937-382-2574, ext. 2510 or on Twitter @NathanKraatz.